SELECTMEN’S MEETING

MAY 5, 2003

Chairman Perkins called the meeting to order at 7:00 PM.

Selectman Rogers, Selectman Wiksten, and Selectwoman Brunelle were present.

Selectman Eayrs was absent.

 

SELECTMEN’S MINUTES

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Rogers, the Board

VOTED: To approve the Minutes of April 28, 2003.

Unanimous Vote.

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Wiksten, the Board

VOTED: To approve the Executive Minutes of April 28, 2003.

Unanimous Vote.

HEARINGS, MEETINGS & LICENSES

Hearing – Request for Title V Variance – 520 Plymouth Street

Chairman Perkins opened the hearing.

Jeanne Spalding told the Board that the request was for an existing dwelling that has a well in the cellar. The septic system is being upgraded. She said there are good soils and the system can fit without a great deal of cost for the upgrade. In doing so, a variance is being requested to from the existing well from 200’ to 75’. Ms. Spalding said this would not be acceptable.

Ms. Spalding told the Board that Town water is available. There is also plenty of acreage to relocate the well. The Engineer has said that the downwater flows go to the opposite of the street and the septic would not impact the well.

Ms. Spalding said she did not have all of the information from the Engineer, who was not present.

Selectwoman Brunelle made a motion to continue the hearing. At this time, the Engineer arrived. Selectwoman Brunelle withdrew the motion.

Darren Michaelis, AZOR Land Sciences Inc., apologized for being late.

It was noted that abutter notification was not required for this hearing.

Mr. Michaelis said the request is to repair a system. The upgrade would be less than 200’ from the septic, but more than 100’ feet, which is the State Code. He said the location would be 75’ from the existing well, which would be an improvement.

Mr. Michaelis told the Board that the owners are asking to keep the well close to the house because they may build a house in the backyard in the future.

Ms. Spalding said she would require the current well to be decommissioned, prior to construction, according to DEP guidelines.

Selectwoman Brunelle asked why the owners would not tie into Town water. Mr. Michaelis said that the owners have horses, and would not want the expense associated with the upkeep of the horses. They would rather have their own water supply for the horses.

Selectman Rogers questioned the proposed location of the leaching field. He asked why it could not be located at the barn in the back of the house. He noted that this is a large amount of land.

Mr. Michaelis said the proposed location is the "easiest and most economical" location. He said no trees would have to be cut.

Mr. Michaelis also explained that there is an existing well on property abutting the back of the lot. There is a 200’ radius that encompasses this. He said the entire backyard is within the 200’ radius of the neighboring well.

Ms. Spalding noted that a corral area is not allowed to be on top of a septic system.

Selectman Rogers also noted that the well may not be able to be put where it is proposed to be. Mr. Michaelis said this will be tested. Discussion ensued on the type of well. Ms. Spalding said a "deep well" is automatically required.

Selectman Wiksten said he would like to hear from the owners. He said that variances are granted when all other options are exhausted. Because Town water is available, this has not been done. The proposal is being made because it is the "easiest" place.

Selectman Rogers said the plan is "not very well thought out". He said he, too, would like to speak to the owners.

Upon motion by Selectman Rogers and seconded by Selectman Wiksten, the Board

VOTED: To continue the hearing to next week.

Unanimous Vote.

Selectman Rogers asked how old the house is. Mr. Michaelis said he was not sure.

 

 

Meeting with Attorney Robert Mather – RE: Simeone Proposal

Attorney Robert Mather told the Board that he is representing the Simeone family. He said that Bill Simeone and Attorney Richard Serky from Plymouth were also present. Attorney Serky has worked with the family in regards to the Town of Carver.

Attorney Mather said his clients have been working on this project for 18 months. The proposal is to build a shopping center in Carver, at the end of Rte. 44. He said he understood there is an Article on the upcoming Warrant that will address the issue of providing water.

Attorney Mather said he would like to discuss the issue and provide a specific and negotiated proposal offered to the Town of Middleborough. Attorney Mather said he has also been working with residents who have expressed reservations regarding the project.

The Proposal includes four (4) items as follows:

  1. A one time payment of $250,000 to the Town of Middleborough with no stipulations.
  2. Retrofit certain municipal Town buildings with water saving devices that would result in a 2 for 1 savings to the Town. The applicant will hire an independent engineer to verify the savings.
  3. Pay a water development charges of $3.80 per gallon with an anticipated use of 9,000 gallons per year, totaling $34,200.
  4. Purchase the water from the Town of Middleborough at 100% premium.

Attorney Mather said the proposal would result in a one-time payment to the Town in the amount of $284,200. He noted that the Town is currently dealing with a fiscal crisis.

Attorney Mather said he recognizes that water is a valuable commodity, and noted that the proposal will have a positive increasing effect on the water supply. He said there is also a long range effect with the water being sold for twice the cost.

Attorney Mather said he would like the Board to agree to the Proposal, and support it at the upcoming Town Meeting.

Chairman Perkins noted that a sub-committee has been working with Carver to update and create a successor agreement. Prior to that, the Simeone family had approached the Board asking for a water hookup. No additional hookups would be provided until the current issues were resolved with Carver. He said this has been done, and the successor agreement and as-builts are complete. The Simeone project has also been discussed with Carver. He agreed that this would be a win/win situation; not only monetary, but the 2:1 savings.

Selectwoman Brunelle said the project demonstrates the willingness to be a good neighbor. She noted that the project is for an existing business in Carver that is relocated, not new development in Carver.

Selectwoman Brunelle asked what the cost savings would be for the 2:1. Mr. Healey said he could get this information.

Selectman Rogers noted that, when Ocean Spray left, the Town lost 300,000 gallons per day in water revenue. He said he supports this project. The volume requested is a "drop in the bucket", and the proposal is more than fair.

Selectman Wiksten said it is a good idea the way it is being presented. He said he hoped the Board would consider making this a policy for other requests that may come before the Board. He also said he would like the money to be used to expand our own systems.

Mr. Healey said the payment is undefined in where it goes. He said it could also be considered a type of "payment in lieu of taxes".

Selectwoman Brunelle said she agreed with Selectman Wiksten. The money should stay within the Water Department for future expansion. She said using the money for the general tax base is enticing, but would not be appropriate.

Selectman Wiksten noted that the proposal still involves a Town Meeting vote.

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Rogers, the Board

VOTED: To support the Proposal made by the Simeone Family, and to offer favorable recommendation on the Town Meeting Floor.

Unanimous Vote.

Selectwoman Brunelle said the Board will need to decide where the money will go, as this will be important in the discussion at Town Meeting.

Meeting with Attorney Robert Kraus – RE: St. Luke’s Hospital

This meeting was rescheduled to next week.

NEW BUSINESS

Update on Budget – FY’04

Mr. Healey told the Board that the School Superintendent had met with the Budget Sub-Committee and have agreed to recommend that the School Committee seek an appropriation of $26,277,142. This would be $600,000 over the House of Representatives proposed Foundation Budget, and $2,121,174 more than the current FY’03 Foundation Budget of $24,105,968. This would fund a level services operation budget and permit the continuation of the full-day kindergarten program, two (2) teachers to deal with class size problems at the High School, and two (2) Inclusion teachers. There is not language program for Grade 7 in this budget. The Superintendent is using $434,000 of the $720,000 available in Chapter 71 funds. These figures also do not take into account the $160,000 Kindergarten Expansion Grant this is in the House Budget. If this amount stays, the additional money could be used to fund the language program for Grade 7.

Mr. Healey said the total needed to fund a level services budget in $1,873,865. This is based on the House Budget and the additional $600,000 above the required Net School Spending.

Mr. Healey also provided information from Judy MacDonald on the Debt Exclusion Question.

Mr. Healey suggested that a commitment not to institute new fees or assess charges for such things as Trash and Recycling Collection, School Transportation or Athletic/Activity fees be made if the Debt Exclusion is passed.

Chairman Perkins questioned why the School Department was not using the $160,000 figure for the Kindergarten program. He said $158,400 was received in this years budget.

$1.8 million would be needed to level fund the General Government and the School Department. Mr. Healey noted that the School Department would need to hire the additional personnel that has been requested.

Chairman Perkins felt that discussion of a ballot question was "about 2 weeks premature". He said he was ready to entertain the idea of a discussion. He said the Senate Budget will play a major role, and this is due out to the public between the 11th and the 14th.

Selectwoman Brunelle said she understood this, but noted that there are only 7 weeks remaining in the current fiscal year. She said other decisions have to be made. If the Debt Exclusion did not pass. She said there needs to be a policy for people who will be potentially laid off to take their vacation time.

Selectman Wiksten agreed with Selectwoman Brunelle. He said the Board owes this to the people who may be laid off. He said if a decision was made to do something at the last minute that would be fine. He said he did not expect to see much difference with the Senate Budget. He said people need to know what it means if a Debt Exclusion does not pass.

Selectman Rogers said he did not disagree. He said it was time for the Board to move forward.

Chairman Perkins asked how much money would be asked for a Debt Exclusion.

Selectwoman Brunelle said the Board does not have all the numbers. She said her preference would be to go for the numbers for existing bonding. This would be $1.8 million.

Chairman Perkins said proposing a Debt Exclusion at this time is not necessary, and has not been thought through.

Mr. Healey asked Chairman Perkins if the Senate might do something to reduce the debt. Chairman Perkins said there are definite possibilities. He said there should be some degree of cuts and some degree of increases taxes.

Mr. Healey said it was "more of a conceptual thing tonight". If there was a decision to move forward, the numbers could be adjusted prior to the ballot question being presented.

Mr. Healey said the Board should also make a policy decision regarding the vacation question. If employees are laid off, and have not taken their vacation time, the Town will have to pay for the vacation time.

Selectman Wiksten questioned how much of a cut would be done. He noted that there might be too many people taking vacations during June if something was not done now.

Chairman Perkins said these are the difficult decisions that the Board will need to make. He noted that there will not be agreement at all times.

Selectwoman Brunelle said asking for a $1.8 million debt exclusion could also help with next years budget. She suggested the amount could also be $1.5 million, with a 5% reduction cut in budgets.

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Rogers, the Board

VOTED: To place a Ballot Question for a Debt Exclusion in the amount of $1.8 million, with figures subject to change in the next two (2) weeks.

VOTE 3 – 1 (Chairman Perkins opposed)

Selectman Rogers also asked about the Warrant Articles for Capital Planning recommendations. These include modular schools, a pool cover, police cruiser, and a school bus. He asked how these projects related to the Debt Exclusion.

Mr. Healey asked what the total of the projects would be. Selectman Rogers said it was almost $4 million to do everything.

Mr. Healey said it would add to the total and increase the amount of the debt exclusion. This would mean additional taxes. He questioned how the Board felt about this, and suggested maintenance items could not be done at this time because of the fiscal crisis.

Selectwoman Brunelle said she would be reluctant to add this to the override question. On a Town Meeting Warrant, the vote for funding would be subject to an override at a future date. She said the Board needs to deal with the current issues.

Selectman Rogers noted that the school modules are needed for September.

Mr. Healey said, for a Debt Exclusion question to be successful, the residents need to be shown where cuts have been made. He said the Finance Committee is continuing to meet with Department Heads and had already secured $500,000 in cuts.

Selectman Wiksten suggested that the FinCom be notified of the Board’s decision and allow them to be part of the decision of the final figure.

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Wiksten, the Board

VOTED: To hold an Election to address a Ballot Question for a Debt Exclusion on June 21, 2003.

Unanimous Vote.

Selectman Rogers asked if the Board would like to include the ballot questions regarding hunting on the Weston Forest. He noted the cost of holding a special election.

Upon motion by Selectman Rogers and seconded by Selectman Wiksten, the Board

VOTED: To add questions regarding the allowance of hunting on the Weston Memorial Forest.

Unanimous Vote.

The School Department was present at this time. Dr. Walsh was asked why the $160,000 figure for the Kindergarten Grant was not included in their budget.

Dr. Walsh said that the budget figure has not been finalized. This will be done in a couple of weeks. She there is no guarantee of receiving this money.

Mr. Healey asked, if the Grant was issued, would the money be deducted or put towards a foreign language program.

Dr. Walsh said the School Committee would make recommendations.

Mr. Healey asked Dr. Walsh about committing no fees if a Debt Exclusion question passed. Dr. Walsh promised she would try, noting it is difficult to raise taxes and charge fees.

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Wiksten, the Board

VOTED: To enter into Executive Session at 8:32 PM, for Litigation and Negotiations, to return to Open Session to complete the Agenda items.

A poll vote was taken. Selectman Rogers, Selectman Wiksten, Selectwoman Brunelle and Chairman Perkins approved.

VOTE 4 - 0

--------RETURN TO OPEN SESSION--------

Request for Water Main Extension – "The Village at Cherry Street"

The Board received a recommendation from the Water Superintendent to extend an 8-inch water main from East Grove Street (Rte.28) down Cherry Street approximately 1000 lineal feet to service a proposed condominium project. The extension will eventually loop to the Vaughn Street Well.

Mr. Healey said the cost will be approximately $10,000 and this is in the Water Department budget. He noted that the Town needs a 12" main, and will "pay the difference".

Selectman Wiksten said if the Town wants a 12" main, then that’s what should be required.

Mr. Tinkham suggested the Board make this a policy.

Selectman Rogers said 12" mains were recommended in the Distribution Report Study. Chairman Perkins said because of this, the policy is already is place.

Upon motion by Selectman Wiksten and seconded by Selectman Rogers, the Board

VOTED: To allow a 12-inch water main extension from East Grove Street (Rte 28) down Cherry Street approximately 1,000 lineal feet to serve a proposed condominium project that will consist of four (4) two-unit buildings for a total of eight (8) units, and for the Water Superintendent to make a recommendation regarding the applicant’s property.

Unanimous Vote.

Request for Waiver of Minimum (8-inch) Main Requirement – Water Superintendent

The Water Superintendent recommended a four-inch main be used to supply two (2) customers on Media Way off of East Grove Street. Mr. Tinkham said that there is only a domestic need for water at the locations.

It was also noted that Comcast Cable has a previously installed one-inch service.

Selectman Wiksten said he opposed the request. He noted that no one could be certain what would be there in the future. He also suggested that Comcast should be required to hook up to this service. He asked if there would be any hydrants.

Mr. Tinkham said this could be required.

Upon motion by Selectman Wiksten and seconded by Selectwoman Brunelle, the Board

VOTED: To require an 8-inch main, with a hydrant, to supply all customers located on Media Way off of East Grove Street.

Unanimous Vote.

Request Permission for Road Race – Old Colony YMCA

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Wiksten, the Board

VOTED: To approve the request made by the Old Colony YMCA for permission to run a road race on May 31, 2003 and a Triathlon on July 13, 2003, and to notify the Police Chief.

Unanimous Vote.

Request to Reappoint Historical Commission Members – Town Manager

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Wiksten, the Board

VOTED: To reappoint Jane Lopes and Janice Brocklehurst to the Historical Commission for a term of three (3) years.

Unanimous Vote.

Request to Use Town Hall – Middleboro Veterans Council

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Wiksten, the Board

VOTED: To allow the Middleboro Veterans Council to use the Town Hall on Memorial Day for a rededication of the WWI Plaques, and to use the Hall for ceremonies in case of rain, and to waive the fee.

Unanimous Vote.

Mr. Healey said he has been told that the plaques will be mounted on time.

The Board was showed the layout for the plaques.

Request to Appoint Representative to SRPEDD

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Rogers, the Board

VOTED: To appoint John F. Healey as the Board’s Representative to SRPEDD.

Unanimous Vote.

Request to Use Town Hall Lawn & Parking Area – Antiques, Etc.

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Wiksten, the board

VOTED: To approve the request made by Carol Lucas d/b/a Antiques, Etc. to use the Town Hall front lawn and parking area to hold a one day outdoor antiques show and sale on Saturday, September 13, 2003 from 6:00 AM to 3:00 PM, with the caveat that no tents or stakes will be driven into the front lawn because of the sprinkler system.

Unanimous Vote.

Request to Appoint Members to Athletic Playing Fields Committee – Town Manager

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Rogers, the Board

VOTED: To appoint David Paling, Dave DeFelice and Pat Freitas as members of the Athletic Playing Fields Committee.

Unanimous Vote.

Selectman Wiksten questioned why additional members were being appointed.

Mr. Healey explained that these are people with unique experiences who give input to determine the needs.

Selectman Wiksten told the Board that he would have to resign as the Board’s representative on this Committee. He explained that his wife is also on the Committee, and it is difficult for both to make the meetings.

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Wiksten, the Board

VOTED: To accept the resignation of Selectman Wiksten from the Athletic Playing Fields Committee and to appoint Selectman Rogers as the Board’s representative.

Unanimous Vote.

Request to Approve & Sign Agreement for Engineering Services – Weston & Sampson

The Board reviewed the Agreement for Engineering Services in regards to a study of playing fields. This will be paid for by the Peirce Trustees.

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Wiksten, the Board

VOTED: To approve the Agreement for Engineering Services with Weston & Sampson, subject to Town Counsel’s approval.

Unanimous Vote.

Selectman Rogers noted that the Agreement should contain language that would allow recommendations for upgrading existing fields.

Request to Approve Street Name –‘Pebble Brook’ – E911 Database Coordinator

Upon motion by Selectman Wiksten and seconded by Selectwoman Brunelle, the Board

VOTED: To approve the name ‘Pebble Brook Drive’ for a new street name for a cul-de-sac to be located off Smith Street on Map 87, lots 2078, 1165, 365, and 2636.

Unanimous Vote.

 

Request to Award Contract – Wastewater Superintendent

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Wiksten, the Board

VOTED: To award the bid for Copper Optimization Engineering Report Proposals to CDM for $59,500.

Unanimous Vote.

Mr. Healey noted that Special Town Meeting had approved up to $150,000.

OLD BUSINESS

Parking on Long Point Road

This item was tabled. The Board has not received copies of the layout.

Discuss Letter to D.E.P. – RE: Nemasket Street Interceptor Project

This item was tabled for one (1) week.

TOWN MANAGER’S REPORT

Selectwoman Brunelle noted that the Town Accountant had used a preliminary figure of $2 million dollars for Free Cash. She said she believed there was only $23 - $24,000.

Mr. Healey said this is a projection, noting that the local receipts are underestimated. This gives Free Cash for the following year.

Selectwoman Brunelle said, if everything goes well, the budget could be balanced in June using the adjust local receipts as opposed to Free Cash.

Chairman Perkins said he would like the report to reflect what we actually have. He noted that the Board had voted to ask for a Debt Exclusion.

Mr. Healey said the Board would be using next year’s Free Cash to balance this years budget.

Selectwoman Brunelle said the money would still be spent whether it was in June or in the Fall. She said waiting until the Fall would cause additional spending. She said she would rather see the budget balanced now.

Mr. Healey said an addition $1.2 million could be added. He said using this would still give the same problem, noting that an underestimation will not turn into Free Cash for next year. He said there has to be a 4 – 5 year program put in place or the Town will find itself with a $2 million structural deficit on top of the shortfall.

Mr. Healey said using the local receipts will allow the Board to reconsider the debt exclusion vote, but would probably require a larger one next year.

Selectwoman Brunelle said the debt exclusion question would remain, and with the additional receipts.

Mr. Healey said doing the debt exclusion in addition could make some sense to deal with the structural deficit.

Selectwoman Brunelle said that the Town Accountant needs to redo the projected figures, adding $1.2 million.

SELECTMEN’S BILLS

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Wiksten, the Board

VOTED: To pay the bill submitted by Spinale & Spinale in the amount of $1,380.00.

Unanimous Vote.

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Wiksten, the Board

VOTED: To pay the bill submitted by W.B. Mason Company, Inc. in the amount of $59.71.

Unanimous Vote.

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Wiksten, the Board

VOTED: To pay two (2) bills submitted by Verizon in the amounts of $21.10 and $21.10, totaling $42.20.

Unanimous Vote.

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Wiksten, the Board

VOTED: To pay six bills submitted by the Middleborough Gas & Electric Department in the amounts of $9.27, $5.35, $5.35, $89.34, $294.26 and $38.78, totaling $442.35.

Unanimous Vote.

OTHER

 

 

CORRESPONDENCE

Mr. Healey said that this allegation was not true, and he had never been consulted regarding Thornton’s Lane.

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Rogers, the Board

VOTED: To enter into Executive Session, not to return to Open Session, to discuss Litigation.

A poll vote was taken. Selectman Rogers, Selectman Wiksten, Selectwoman Brunelle and Chairman Perkins approved.

VOTE 4 – 0

 

 

Diane Henault, Secretary

BOARD OF SELECTMEN